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Panasonic Lumix DMC-L1 Gordon Laing, October 2006

Panasonic Lumix DMC-L1 gallery

The following images were taken with the Panasonic Lumix DMC L1 using the Leica D Vario-Elmarit 14-50mm f2.8-3.5 lens. The L1 was set Large SuperFine quality, Auto White Balance, Multi-Pattern Metering and its Standard Film Mode (using the default settings of zero for contrast, sharpness and saturation, and the default minimum -2 setting for noise reduction). The individual exposure mode, file sizes, shutter speeds, aperture, ISO and lens focal length are listed for each image.

The crops are taken from the original files, reproduced at 100% and saved in Adobe Photoshop CS2 as JPEGs with the default Very High quality preset, while the resized images were made in Photoshop CS2 and saved with the default High quality preset. The three crops are typically taken from far left, central and far right portions of each image.
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Landscape: 5.50MB, Program, 1/125, f11, ISO 100, 14-50mm at 14mm (equivalent to 28mm)

  This shot was taken with the Leica lens zoomed-out to its widest equivalent of 28mm. The aperture of f11 ensured a large depth-of-field.

The crops are clean and noise-free as you'd hope at 100 ISO, but look slightly soft. This was evident with most of our L1 shots using the default settings.

It's no fault of the lens or camera though, just modest sharpening by default. Considerably higher detail can be revealed with greater sharpening either in-camera or through software later.

Harbour: 4.16MB, Program, 1/160, f7.1, ISO 100, 14-50mm at 14mm (equivalent to 28mm)

    This shot of a boat was taken at relatively close range with the Leica lens at 14mm.

As above, the crops are clean, but again greater sharpening can unveil more detail.

Those who prefer punchier images out the camera should try the Dynamic Film Mode which increases contrast, sharpness and saturation.


Portrait: 4.15MB, Program, 1/250, f8, ISO 100, 14-50mm at 20mm (equivalent to 40mm)

  This portrait was taken with the Leica lens slightly zoomed-in to an equivalent of 40mm.

Again when viewed at 100% the image is very clean and willing to handle additional sharpening.

The default Standard processing, while not tack-sharp, does deliver very pleasing images with good colour balance, tonal range and an almost film-like quality.

Landscape: 5.24MB, Aperture Priority , 1/100, f11, ISO 100, 14-50mm at 14mm (equivalent to 28mm)

    This landscape shot was taken with the Leica lens zoomed-out to 14mm. To ensure a sufficient depth-of-field, the aperture was set to f11 - a quick and easy adjustment on the Leica lens thanks to its analogue aperture ring.

The image was composed using the L1's Live View mode and optional grid lines, which greatly helped with lining up the desired horizon. The Live View mode is very useful in situations like these and also for checking 100% coverage.

Indoor: 3.77MB, Aperture Priority, 1/8, f11, ISO 800, 14-50mm at 14mm (equivalent to 28mm)

  To further test the L1's high sensitivity performance, we manually increased the ISO to 800 for this indoor shot. With auto white balance the shot suffered from a strong tungsten cast, so we manually selected indoor white balance.

Noise levels are quite high in shadow areas, but it's still usable. The highest 1600 ISO suffers from much worse noise though as can be seen below.

Note the OIS eliminated any camera-shake on this 1/8 exposure.

Indoor: 4.24MB, Program, 1/13, f3.5, ISO 1600, 14-50mm at 50mm (equivalent to 100mm)

  For this indoor shot we increased the sensitivity to the maximum 1600 ISO. There's a significant increase in noise when viewed at 100% compared to the 800 ISO mode.

The white balance was set to auto and there's a cast from the indoor lighting, but it's easily corrected by a manual white balance adjustment as seen in the last example.

It's finally worth noting the optical stabilisation has impressively eliminated any camera shake from this 1/13 exposure at an equivalent of 100mm.

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All words, images, videos and layout, copyright 2005-2017 Gordon Laing. May not be used without permission.

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